Lifesum (formerly ShapeUp Club) - Support Center

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Food Rating - that's how it works

Last Updated: Sep 14, 2016 02:08PM CEST

What's the point of food rating?

To help you:

- Learn about healthy eating, not just calories
- Get a clearer idea of how healthy the foods you eat really are
- Discover how simply switching brands can have a positive effect on your health
- Find healthier alternatives for your favorite foods
- Eat better


How do the ratings work?
Rates are awarded to each food based on its distribution of macro- and micronutrients - carbohydrates, fat, protein, sugar, fiber, and sodium - its calorie density, and the type of food it is.


Why is the rating applied per 100 Cal and not per 100 grams or per serving?
Giving a rate per serving can lead to a good rating for an unhealthy food, when for example tend to eat more than the recommended serving, and the latest research says that per 100 Cal is the fairest way of rating food. Always ask yourself this question when you are evaluating the rating an item receives, 'Will I have up to 100 Cal of this?'


Remember that these are suggestions designed to help you cultivate a healthier attitude to food, and it's likely some ratings will appear confusing or contrary to what you previously thought. If for example, you usually eat a piece of crisp bread with some cottage cheese and some fruit, you may be surprised to see that your 22 Cal crisp bread gets a 'D' rating. It's likely getting a D rating because it doesn't contain enough nutritional value per 100 Cal and is a processed food. In combination with the cottage cheese and the fruit, it's healthy, but on it's own or in high amounts, it isn't so great. The idea with the rating is not to make you stop eating it altogether, but to get you clued in to what constitutes a healthy a food and what doesn't.


Why aren't all items rated?
The ratings are based on each food's distribution of macro- and micronutrients - carbohydrates, fat, protein, sugar, fiber, and sodium - its calorie density, and the type of food it is, so it must be listed as the right type of food and have all macro- and micronutrient information specified in order for it to receive a correct rating.


Why do the same types of food get different ratings?
Whilst the food type can be the same, the nutritional information can be different, and this affects the life rating awarded. If one of two similar foods is missing information for fiber, sugar, saturated fat or unsaturated fat, that can be another reason.


Why is information under the tick missing for the food?
It's likely the food does not contain enough of the required healthy nutrients per 100 Cal, and therefore none have been listed.


Why is information under the cross missing for the food?
It's likely the food doesn’t contain enough unhealthy nutrient values, so there are no bad reasons to list.


How can meat, poultry, fish, vegetables and fruit for example, get the same rating?
The ratings are based on a number of different factors. The type of food is important, but not the most important factor. The ratings also consider the nutritional benefit each food has to offer.


How can oils, nuts, seeds, cookies, pizza and ice cream for example, get the same ratings?
At nutritional level, some very different foods can look very similar, or possess the same nutritional benefits. Oils, nuts, seeds cookies, pizza and ice-cream are all very high in fat, and contain a lot of calories tightly packed into very few grams. This could lead to them all getting a bad rating. It's not just the type of food, it's the nutritional content as well.


Why do different brands of the same food get different ratings?
The same types of food can be very different. Remember that the nutrients it contains are the most important. For example, one brand of peanut butter may contain 65 mg of sodium per 100 Cal, where another contains 80 mg, and this affects the rating each one receives.


Why did my friend and I get different ratings for exactly the same food?
Has your friend got different dietary preferences or are they on a different diet? Different dietary preferences can lead to different food ratings for the same food. For example, someone on a ketogenic diet, who aims to consume fewer carbohydrates, will see lower ratings for high carbohydrate foods than you would.


Why am I only on a Food Rating trial?
Food Rating is only available for Gold members. As a free user you can try it for 4 days free, but if you Upgrade to Gold membership you get full access to it, as well as a number of other useful features.


Can I turn Food Rating off?
At present, it is not possible to hide Food Rating or turn it off, but this may change in the future.

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